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CBT Selects Rossland Sustainability Commission for State of the Basin Initiative

The Columbia Basin Trust (CBT) is pleased to announce three community pilot projects that will receive financial support as part of the State of the Basin Initiative, a model for monitoring and reporting on social, environmental, economic and cultural indicators and trends in the Columbia Basin region.
 
Earlier this year, CBT invited municipalities, regional districts, First Nations, not-for-profit organizations and other groups to submit project proposals related to planning efforts that incorporate information.
 
“CBT launched our State of the Basin Initiative late last year in response to a demand for accurate, meaningful, Basin-specific information that would allow for evidence-based strategic planning and decision-making toward issues that affect the sustainability and legacy of our communities,” said Sabrina Curtis, Director, Policy and Planning, CBT. “We are very happy to now extend the Initiative by supporting three projects that will use credible information to address issues representative of many Basin communities. CBT hopes that what is learned through the efforts of these projects will be helpful for others doing similar projects in the future.”
 
CBT is developing networking ideas for other interested communities and groups to connect with the selected projects, share their experiences and learn from each other.
 
The Rossland Strategic Sustainability Commission will develop and put to use a comprehensive indicator-based monitoring program to support ongoing planning in Rossland and track progress towards local sustainability.
 
“CBT’s State of the Basin invitation for community proposals was incredibly well-timed for Rossland,” said Jennifer Ellis, Project Coordinator, Rossland Strategic Sustainability Commission. “The Sustainability Commission was scheduled to develop a monitoring and reporting process this year and CBT’s State of the Basin website had already been identified as a starting point. We will be developing a set of indicators for Rossland that builds on similar ones developed by CBT; we look forward to the opportunity to work more closely with CBT in aligning these programs.”
 
The East Kootenay Integrated Lake Management Partnership will work toward sustainable foreshore land use decisions on Columbia Lake that will account for cumulative impacts to sensitive habitats and engage the public in the process. The project will complete foreshore inventories using a combination of mapping tools.
 
“Our vision is for productive and healthy lake ecosystems in the East Kootenay region, with balanced land and water uses that support and sustain traditional, environmental, community, recreational and aesthetic values,” said Heather Leschied, Chair, East Kootenay Integrated Lake Management Partnership. “The information collected will help develop Shoreline Management Guidelines for official community plans and other zoning processes.”
 
The Kaslo and District Community Forest Society’s project will create a long-term strategy for the stewardship of the resources surrounding Kaslo by using multiple-scenario planning and incorporating public input and community values.
 
“Our goal is to have a long-term strategic plan for the Community Forest written by next spring,” said Steve Anderson, Chair of the Long-term Planning Committee for the Kaslo and District Community Forest Society. “With the support from CBT we’ll be able to create the best possible plan, one that will take into account the environmental, social and economic constraints, as well as the values residents share around this community asset.”
 
CBT continues to encourage public feedback on the Initiative through the State of the Basin website, which will assist CBT in improving the tools offered by this Initiative. Visit www.cbt.org/stateofthebasin to access all of the resources and learn more about the Initiative.